CRA will get a major overhaul if the Liberals come to power in the next federal election.
Today, the party outlined a plan they say will make the tax agency fairer and more accessible to everyday people. Under their proposal, CRA would:
– contact people who are entitled to tax benefits, but who aren’t claiming them;
– offer to complete returns for low- and fixed-income Canadians, whose financial circumstances haven’t changed;
– help Canadians file taxes electronically;
– simplify correspondence.
The Liberals would also invest $80 million over four years to track down tax evaders. As a new government, they would also clarify the rules for charities that engage in political activities – something the Conservative government has cracked down on for recent years. Critics say the government has been motivating CRA to audit charities that don’t support – or campaign against – conservative policies. The government has denied this accusation.
Government, citizens and financial management
The Liberals included a number of items in their platform that would reform how the government makes decisions, accounts for money, and informs Canadians.
They would make the Parliamentary Budget Officer – who costs out government policies and their effect on the public purse – accountable to all of Parliament, not just the government. The party would also standardize accounting practices across its major budget and spending documents.
They want to make it easier for people to access the information the government has about them. They would create a central website where people could request the information for free. Applications for services like immigration, Employment Insurance and pension appeals would also be streamlined.